About the Georgia Library History Project


The Georgia Library History Project was initiated in 2001 by David Wilson, then Director of the Ocmulgee Regional Library. The Georgia project was to be modeled on the South Carolina Library History Project, which had been in progress since about 1985. The Ocmulgee Regional Library funded a contract with the University of South Carolina School of Library and Information Science for the work. Prof. Robert V. Williams was the principal investigator for the project. Geoff LoCicero, then Graduate Assistant in the School of Library and Information Science, did the initial research, created the database, and constructed the Web site for display of the information. Daniel Barron, then Director of the School, and Stephen Whigham, then Asst. Director of the Ocmulgee Regional Library, assisted in various ways. Liz Qunell and Jill Chappel-Fail, Information Technology staff for the School of Library and Information Science, provided technical assistance for various aspects of the project.

The original objectives for the project were:

  1. Update an earlier Georgia library history bibliography.
  2. Scan and make available on the Web all articles in the bibliography not restricted by copyright.
  3. Survey all Georgia public libraries to determine the kinds of materials they owned that could be useful to the writing of a history of the library and capture this information in the database.
  4. Visit major historical repositories in Georgia to locate and document in the database any additional historical materials useful to writing a history of Georgia libraries.

Because of the lack of additional funding for the project it was not possible to complete all of these objectives. For a variety of reasons, the response rate from the directors of the public libraries in the state was poor. Planned visits to additional academic and other types of libraries had to be curtailed.

The original plan for display of the information was an interactive Web-based database using Inmagic, Inc. software. However, for a variety of reasons, final implementation of the interactive database was delayed, additional funding was not available, and the project languished for several years. In 2009 support for revival of the project was provided by the School of Library and Information Science, thanks to the interest of Dr. Samantha Hastings, Director. Elizabeth Brinley, Graduate Assistant in the School, has ably reconstructed the original information and designed the current Web site.

Comments, corrections, additions, etc. are welcome. Please direct them to: Robert V. Williams.